Wednesday, February 08, 2006

Endemol and KPN in content joint venture, at last

Entertainment producer Endemol and the incumbent telecom KPN have announced their intention to work towards a joint venture which will exploit the Endemol library of content on all KPN platforms in the Dutch markets such as Internet, television and mobile Special digital theme channels will be set up for KPN TV, while video on demand services will be set up for internet and mobile. The joint venture will also distribute non-exclusive material to third parties.

KPN will get access to the vast library of Dutch and foreign productions. Television series from the past . The joint venture will also produce new multi-platform programs and develop new ways of advertising.

KPN is going big into television this way. It has already strategical positions.The company is the largest Internet provider with labels as Planet Internet, XS4ALL and Het Net. It also has the most mobile clients under the labels KPN, Hi and Telfort as well as several operators of virtual mobile networks. The company is presently introducing triple play in the Netherlands. KPN has the transmission and billing technology as well as vast audiences, but KPN does not have any content. Endemol has content and has a limited client base of television companies. The joint venture is a very strategic move as KPN is competing with Tele2, which bought Versatel, the company with the rights to Dutch soccer as a basis for its triple play strategy, but also against the cable companies.

It is interesting to see Endemol and KPN going into a joint venture. Endemol and KPN were also talking about new company just before the turn of a century during the crazy days of World Online (now part of Tiscali). There were several proposals on the table at that time to form a new entertainment company. Originally it were Dutch companies talking to each other: the entertainment company Endemol, the telco KPN, the television facilities company NOB Interactive and the ISP World Online. Together this Dutch pride would form one of the largest European entertainment companies, ready to face the new times. There were meeting days and nights, in which various outlines were discussed. The revolving door of Endemol in Hilversum never stopped turning, until Telefonica announced the acquisition of Endemol for 5,5 million euro. Six years later the love affair between Telefonica and Endemol is over and finally have KPN and Endemol found each other in a joint venture.


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